February 1, 2010 |
Thanks to the Pro Bowl, the scoreboard in Miami Gardens, Fla., is all warmed up for the Super Bowl. Long gains were the rule and hard hitting was the exception Sunday night as the AFC beat the NFC, 41-34. Light showers fell for much of the game, stirring memories of a rainy Super Bowl in the same stadium three years ago, but the weather failed to slow either offense. The AFC's Matt Schaub and the NFC's Aaron Rodgers threw two touchdown passes each, and DeSean Jackson caught two scoring passes for the NFC. From the standpoint of ticket sales, this year's new venue and slot on the NFL calendar was a success.
January 18, 2010 |
New York quarterback Mark Sanchez might have been awarded the game ball in the Jets' 17-14 divisional win over the San Diego Chargers on Sunday. Then again, he might not have. Regardless, the ball wound up in his hands. "I just grabbed it," Sanchez said, standing before a large cluster of reporters crammed into a tiny interview room. "Didn't really ask too many questions." Sort of the way his Jets got their ticket to the AFC championship game. They didn't ask any questions -- and certainly didn't take any outside opinions to heart -- and just ripped it from the hands of a San Diego team that had won 11 in a row. It looked as if the Chargers were headed for a third consecutive season with a playoff game against Indianapolis.
November 23, 2009 |
The Houston Texans know Chris Johnson. The Tennessee Titans running back trampled them to the tune of 197 yards earlier this season. The Texans are just hoping Johnson doesn't recognize them . That's because Houston figures its run defense is a lot better than it was in Week 2, when Johnson scored three touchdowns and racked up 284 yards from scrimmage. Over their last six games, the Texans have yielded an NFL-best average of 60.5 yards on the ground. "To me, they're getting better and better," Texans Coach Gary Kubiak said of his defense.
November 23, 2009
at Minnesota 35, Seattle 9: An 88% completion rate? Just great, we'll never get Brett Favre to retire now. at Green Bay 30, San Francisco 24: Poor Aaron Rodgers. No matter what he does, he always ends up overshadowed by Brett Favre. at Jacksonville 18, Buffalo 15: Being the interim coach of the Bills is sort of like being the principal of summer school. at Dallas 7, Washington 6: If this had been a soccer match, everyone would use it as an example of why the sport will never catch on in the U.S. at Detroit 38, Cleveland 37: It's not often that you can double your win total from a year ago and still be a horrible team.
November 24, 2009
A common postgame response to questions after NFL games is, "I have to wait to see the film." Times NFL writer Sam Farmer sorts through the best of Monday's film review: :: Eric Mangini, Cleveland coach, suggesting the Detroit Lions might have been manipulating the clock Sunday by being less than truthful about injuries: "There were multiple, multiple, multiple injuries throughout our no-huddle process." :: Jim Schwartz, Lions coach, on Mangini's assertion: "He's way out of bounds on that.
December 1, 2009
A common postgame response to questions after NFL games is, "I have to wait to see the film." Times NFL writer Sam Farmer sorts through the best of Monday's film review: :: Hines Ward, Pittsburgh receiver, in an NBC interview, on playing through injuries: "I've lied to a couple of doctors saying 'I'm straight, I feel good,' when I knew I'm really not straight." :: Ward, to ESPN, on his apparent questioning of the decision to sit Ben Roethlisberger for the Baltimore game: "I'm not going to question Ben's toughness; the guy came back from a motorcycle incident and played that whole year.
December 6, 2009
Adrian Peterson won't go down without a fight. Sometimes, that's his biggest problem. The Minnesota Vikings star, the NFL's third-leading rusher, has six fumbles this season -- the most among running backs and one behind the league leader, Kansas City quarterback Matt Cassel. Peterson lost two fumbles against Chicago last Sunday and will be focused on tightening his grip tonight at Arizona. That means at times he'll have to embrace the most difficult of concepts: surrender.
December 7, 2009 |
The Baltimore Ravens want to be where the Green Bay Packers already are -- and not just near the top of the NFL's defensive rankings. Whereas the Packers (7-4) have the edge for a wild-card spot, things aren't as clear for Baltimore (6-5), which began the weekend tied with Jacksonville, Denver and Pittsburgh for one of the AFC's two berths. A lot can change with five games to play, of course, but the urgency of the moment is not lost on the Ravens, who haven't recorded consecutive wins since Week 3. "Our goal right now is just to win the game, no matter what it looks like, or what goes on in between, the first quarter, the fourth quarter," Baltimore receiver Mark Clayton told reporters last week.
December 11, 2009 |
One game into the 2009 season -- a disheartening home loss to San Francisco -- and the Arizona Cardinals were finished, history, kaput. Or so most of us thought. After all, eight of the previous 10 Super Bowl losers had missed the playoffs the following season -- and why would the Cardinals be any different? Besides, the last time they made the postseason, in 1998, they promptly tumbled off the table the next fall. So nobody could really argue with Fox's Jimmy Johnson when, during the Week 2 pregame show, he said the Cardinals were toast.